The University of Cape Town’s (UCT) COVID-19 Return to UCT policy framework does not signal business as usual for the campus community. This according to Dr Reno Morar, the chief operating officer of the university.
The policy framework has been instituted to guide faculties and departments across the university on a partial, phased-in return to campus on an invitation-only basis. This, Morar explained, means that only staff and students who receive a personal invitation (addressed to the student or staff member) to return to UCT will be allowed on campus.
The health and safety of staff and students, as well as their families is of utmost concern, and Morar said those invited to return to campus will be required to follow stringent hygiene and physical distancing rules.
He said the policy framework provides a way for the UCT community to take “individual and collective responsibility” for managing the impact of COVID-19 on the Western Cape, as well as nationally.
Morar urged UCT staff and students to take “personal responsibility” and to continue working remotely unless otherwise advised.
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Coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) is a global pandemic that caused President Cyril Ramaphosa to declare a national disaster in South Africa on 15 March and implement a national lockdown from 26 March. The intention of these drastic measures is to “flatten the curve” and contain the spread of the coronavirus to enable healthcare workers to more effectively treat those affected. Although South Africa has recently reached a peak of COVID-19 infections, the country is expecting a surge in positive cases in August.
UCT is taking the threat of infection in our university community extremely seriously, and this page will be updated regularly with the latest COVID-19 information.
Getting credible, evidence-based, accessible information and recommendations relating to COVID-19
The Department of Medicine at the University of Cape Town and Groote Schuur Hospital, are producing educational video material for use on digital platforms and in multiple languages. The information contained in these videos is authenticated and endorsed by the team of experts based in the Department of Medicine. Many of the recommendations are based on current best evidence and are aligned to provincial, national and international guidelines. For more information on UCT’s Department of Medicine, please visit the website.
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In an email to the UCT community, Vice-Chancellor Professor Mamokgethi Phakeng said:
“COVID-19, caused by the virus SARS-CoV-2, is a rapidly changing epidemic. [...] Information [...] will be updated as and when new information becomes available.”
We are continuing to monitor the situation and we will be updating the UCT community regularly – as and when there are further updates. If you are concerned or need more information, students can contact the Student Wellness Service on 021 650 5620 or 021 650 1271 (after hours), while staff can contact 021 650 5685.